Sunday, October 23, 2005

The king of real estate's cashing out

NEW YORK (Fortune) - Tom Barrack, arguably the world's greatest real estate investor, is methodically selling off his U.S. real estate holdings as prices drive the market to nosebleed levels.

Arguably the best real estate investor on the planet, he runs a $245 billion portfolio of trophy assets, from the Raffles hotel chain in Asia to the Aga Khan's former resort in Sardinia to Resorts International, the largest private gaming company in the U.S.

Barrack's Colony Capital, one of the largest private equity firms devoted solely to real estate, has racked up returns of 21 percent annually since 1990, handing investors, chiefly pension funds and college endowments, 17 percent after all fees.

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